Tag Archives: progressive

It’s not about policy positions. Emotion moves swing voters.

We say “Cap and Trade”. They say “Job Killing Energy Tax”.
We say “Public Option”. They say “Government Takeover of Your Health Care”.

They use emotions to connect with people and create negative feelings toward us. We use logic to try to convince people that we’re right. Obama gave people hope in 2008, but we failed miserably by trying to sell the Affordable Care Act as a list of poll tested policies instead of as a moral imperative. Continue reading

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Learning from Lakoff

Quintessential George Lakoff at the Berkeley coffee shop. (BAP photos)

I recently had the privilege of working with the brilliant and delightful Professor George Lakoff at University of California, Berkeley. I went to study framing. I learned far more than I ever imagined about how our minds actually work.

These discoveries in cognitive science elevate Lakoff’s work on political framing from “good advice” to “critical truths we ignore at our own peril”. We have to understand the foundation of our competing moral systems if we are to succeed in reaching people and overturning the Right’s dominance over our public debate. Continue reading